Meet your Instructors
At Fine Art Bartending, each instructor we have knows exactly what students need to get started as a bartender. We have the most seasoned team teaching Vancouver’s best bartending course. You can expect to get tips on working in nightclubs, cocktail bars, private events, and even hockey games. Check out all our staff profiles below.
Sign up for DAYS with Alec Weis
Al got started bartending while studying Anthropology and Economics at UBC. Originally from Ontario, Al wanted to break into bartending so he took a course just like this. In just a few weeks he began slinging drinks at the well renowned Pit Pub and Gallery 2.0 Lounge. After going from busser to manager in just a couple years, Al moved on to making drinks at the Shark Club for the crowds needing a drink before and after events at Rogers Arena and BC Place.
Most recently, he was working the bar at Tap Shack in Coal Harbour while working through his WSET certifications. Currently, Al has his Level 2 in Wine and Spirits from WSET. Al has a passion for wine, and a knowledge of how to pump out drinks in quantity. Bartending is also about quality, and personality and over the course of a couple weeks he will be sure to step you through his adventures behind the bar.
Al also leads our Wine Tasting Seminars too. Come check out one of these classes where he really gets to dive deep into a topic he is very passionate about… that isn’t basketball related.
Sign up for EVENINGS with Grant Gadbois
Grant became interested in bartending back in his early days living in Alberta. After earning a Diploma in Bartender Training from N.A.I.T. he headed out here to Vancouver… and decided to make this city his home. We think he made the right call, especially on those warm sunny days when an Aperol Spritz is the patio cocktail of choice.
Grant has oodles of experience. He has many years as a banquet bartender at the Westin Bayshore, plus many more as a nightclub bartender. Both jobs are very different, but require both accuracy and speed. Weddings and conferences require volumes of cocktails in a very quick fashion to match the theme of the event. Nightclubs offer the opportunity for flair while still cranking out the cocktails.
Travelling is also a passion of his, and he has spent time travelling through much of Europe. He enjoys getting his hands dirty when not behind the bar with some gardening. If you too have a green thumb, Grant is more than happy to share some his knowledge, especially with his Master Gardener Certificate earned right here in Vancouver from VanDusen Botanical Garden.
Sign up for WEEKENDS with Allan Donkervoort
Allan is a born and raised Vancouverite! He has worked everything from high volume bars and nightclubs to upscale restaurants. Over the last 10 years he has been working 40+ hours each week in the food and beverage industry with extensive time as both bartender and bar manager. If you’ve been to Library Square, C Restaurant or the nearby St. Regis Bar & Grill or more recently The Flying Pig, you may have seen him in action.
Allan is a fan of classic cocktails and has developed and implemented many new cocktail lists. He is particularly a fan of a well made Manhattan and will be quick to point out how that spirit-forward cocktail comes together.
Allan is also currently working at the Dockside Restaurant on Granville Island. If you happen to be on that end of the island, you might find him catching some sun while working the patio. Join us on the weekend and learn from one of Vancouver’s most experienced bartenders.
Special Classes with Chris Stoner
Chris graduated from Vancouver Fine Art Bartending back in 1998. Bartending at university parties made him seek out a role behind the bar for both some extra cash while working on that engineering degree. Shortly after finishing the bartending classes, Chris started at a little Greek restaurant in Vancouver’s West Side, and after a couple years he moved on to the city’s best jazz club ‘The Cellar’. Doing a day job as an engineer, and night gig as a bartender soon caught up with him and he hung up his bar rag to focus more on what he went to school for.
Since those early days as a bartender, Chris has always dreamed of opening his own little beach bar somewhere in the world. Chris has been to Europe, Asia, South America, 48 of the 50 US states and has had a drink in each of these places. Not all those beverages were good, but each spot on the map does things a little differently and Chris is effectively a student of everything. He regularly travels in search of that perfect serene and sandy spot, but for now is content to enjoy Vancouver and all the great little happy hour spots around. He also has his WSET Educator Certification and is our in-house WSET Level 1 and 2 Spirits educator.
And if you think you might be perfect to join our team, we are always open to seeing a resume or two. Have a look at our Jobs page for a rundown on what we might be looking for in a bartending instructor.